New Details in Arrest of Brownfield Police Officer
More information has been released concerning a Brownfield police officer being arrested and accused of tampering with evidence. According to information provided by the Brownfield Police Department, on June 29, 2020, a Terry County Sheriff’s Deputy was called to the scene of a one-vehicle rollover accident on County Road 290.
Witnesses to the accident said a Suburban had gone off the road and flipped over, injuring the driver, 38-year-old Angel Rojas. When EMS and the deputy arrived at the scene, a Dodge Charger was also there belonging to 35-year-old off-duty Brownfield police officer Esmeralda Perla Depoyster. It was later determined that Perla is the ex-wife of Rojas and that he had called her to help him after he had the accident.
A police report recounts part of the aftermath of the accident, noting that witnesses say Rojas had his armed pinned under the Suburban and was only freed when someone used a car jack to lift part of the vehicle. Despite being injured, Perla told the deputy at the scene that Rojas did not want to be taken to a hospital and then left with Rojas in her Dodge Charger without getting permission.
Witnesses to the crash also told police that when they went to help Rojas, he smelled like alcohol and had blood-shot eyes. They even claimed to have seen bottles of alcohol in the ditch where he crashed. Perla was arrested on August 4, 2020, for tampering with or fabricating evidence, a 3rd degree felony. She has since posted the $5000 bail. The Texas Highway Patrol is still investigating.
Rojas has not been charged because 4 days after the initial crash, he was involved in another accident on US 380 near Gomez that killed him and another driver on July 4, 2020. According to Texas DPS troopers, Rojas was driving a 2004 Pontiac Grand Am westbound on US 380 when 42-year-old James Northcutt, a New Mexico resident, veered into his lane while driving a 2016 Dodge Charger. Both Northcutt and Rojas were killed in the accident, and it’s reported that Rojas was not wearing a seatbelt.